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10 Best Budgeting Apps for 2024

Budgeting can be stressful when you handle everything manually, but with the help of the best budgeting apps, you can get back on track without all the work.

Budgeting apps can automatically track your income and expenses, monitor your net worth, and help you make important financial decisions that help you reach your goals.

There isn’t one app that’s best for everyone, so I’ve rounded up the top 10 budgeting apps to give you options when choosing which is best for you.

10 Best Budgeting Apps

Here are the top budgeting apps you can download today:

1. Cleo

  • Cost: Budget and personal finances services are free, but Cleo Plus is $5.99 per month and Cleo Builder is $14.99 per month 
  • App Store Ratings: 4.7/5 iOS and 4/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: Varies by plan

Cleo is a financial AI assistant to help you master your personal finances. It uses humor and cheerleading to keep you motivated and on track. If you ask Cleo to ‘roast you,’ you’ll get statements that make fun of your past spending to help you make better spending decisions.

There’s also a ‘hype mode’ that cheers you on for what you did well in the hopes that you’ll keep doing it. 

Cleo will also help you build a budget, adjusting it as your income changes, which is great if you have variable income. Cleo will help you choose the right budget, set up savings on autopilot, and learn where you can cut back on your expenses to save more money.

Keep Reading: Cleo Review

Start Budgeting

2. Tiller Money

  • Cost: $79/year
  • App store ratings: n/a
  • Free trial period: 30 days

Tiller Money is a spreadsheet-based app that directly syncs with nearly 21,000 financial sources, including deposit accounts at large and small banks in the United States, U.S.-based brokerage accounts, employer-sponsored retirement accounts, personal loans, credit cards, and mortgages.

If you bank, invest, or borrow with a U.S.-based financial institution, you should be able to sync most or all of your financial accounts with Tiller Money.

Once you’re synced, Tiller Money makes daily updates to custom-created Google or Excel spreadsheets with automatically categorized transactions pulled from your synced accounts. For example, if you spend $50 at the grocery store today, you’ll see it reflected in the groceries or food category on your spreadsheet tomorrow.

You can set your own categorization rules and color scheme, so your spreadsheets are always easy to follow, and you can manually categorize or recategorize synced transactions.

If you’re not one for checking spreadsheets regularly, Tiller Money’s optional email alerts give you an unobtrusive daily digest delivered to your inbox. If you manage joint finances with a spouse or work with a financial planner, share your spreadsheets with them.

Start Budgeting

3. Simplifi

  • Cost: Normally $3.99/month (current promotion $2/month billed annually)
  • App Store Ratings: 4/5 iOS and 2.8/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: n/a

Simplifi is a Quicken-powered budgeting app with a handy, fully customizable spending plan tool. It uses what it knows about your income and bills to show you precisely how much you can safely spend — and what you must do to stay on track.

Simplifi doesn’t stop there. The app connects to more than 14,000 financial institutions, facilitating a truly holistic view of your entire financial life. Its savings goal feature lets you drill down on small and not-so-small financial goals.

Plus, Quicken’s bill management tools have a knack for uncovering recurring obligations you’ve all but forgotten about, clearing the way for financial housekeeping when you’re ready.

Everything in Quicken is completely automated and 100% customizable, so you can make it your own. You can set it and forget it, or be as involved as you want in creating, managing, and following your budget.

Start Budgeting

4. Honeydue

  • Cost: Free
  • App Store Ratings: 4.5/5 iOS and 3.4/5 Google Play 
  • Free Trial Period: n/a

Honeydue is a financial app to keep couples on the same financial page. Honeydue connects with 20,000+ financial institutions in five countries and lets you share what you want with your partner.

Think of Honeydue as an opportunity to make those difficult financial conversations a little easier. You can ask about transactions or other financial questions in the app or simply send a ‘thumbs up’ when something goes right in your finances.

You can set up custom alerts so you never pay a bill late and share your budget and balances so you can both see where you stand and what needs to change. Think of Honeydue as the easier way to discuss money and help you and your partner reach your financial goals.

Start Budgeting

5. You Need a Budget

  • Cost: $14.99/month or $99/annually
  • App Store Ratings: 4.8/5 iOS and 4.7/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: 34 days

You Need a Budget (YNAB) is a paid budgeting app with an unusually long free trial (34 days) and a no-questions-asked money-back guarantee within 48 hours of subscribing. Although it’s among the most expensive apps on this list, its intuitive features and powerful insights mean users get what they pay for. It was built to help users change their relationship with money. 

YNAB follows a version of the zero-based budgeting method that uses four rules that give every dollar a job, include irregular expenses in your monthly budget, require you to be flexible and help you get to the point of using last month’s money for this month’s bills.

It’s easy to get started, just link all your financial accounts to your YNAB account, set your savings goals, and follow the created budget. With regular use, you’ll see where you spend your money (and where you shouldn’t) and learn how to age your money so you stop living paycheck-to-paycheck.

YNAB claims that the average user saves $6,000 per year, though your actual savings depends on how much fat your budget has to cut in the first place. Even if you cannot save thousands using YNAB, the app will surely get you to think differently about how you’re spending and saving. That could ultimately prove more valuable than a one-time savings boost.

Keep Reading: You Need a Budget (YNAB) Review

Start Budgeting

6. Empower (formerly Personal Capital)

  • Cost: Free
  • App Store Ratings: 4.7/5 iOS and 4.2/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: n/a

Empower offers a free personal finance dashboard where you can link all your financial accounts. The Empower Personal Dashboard™ helps you track your saving, spending, and investing so you always know where you stand.

With all your accounts in one place, making important financial decisions is easy, including where you should cut back or how much you can save. Empower includes a net worth and portfolio for those more interested in investing.

We like Empower because it’s free and is a great addition to its investing platform. It won’t walk you through a budget like YNAB, but it will give you a bird’s eye view of your finances. If you are the DIY type and just need an app to organize the information for you, Empower does that well.

Keep Reading: Empower (formerly Personal Capital) Review

Start Budgeting

7. Monarch Money

  • Cost: $14.99/month or $99.99/year
  • App Store Ratings: 4.8/5 iOS and 4.4/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: 7 days

Monarch Money is an all-in-one budgeting and money management platform that provides a unified view of your household finances, spending patterns, and progress toward long-term financial goals. With DIY financial planning tools and powerful investment portfolio analysis capabilities, it has the potential to replace a human financial advisor if you’re ready to take that step.

Users can sync all their financial data to Monarch to track their balances and net worth. Whether you want to track real estate investments, bank account balances, credit cards, or other loans, you can get real-time charts to help you make important financial decisions. 

If you have other valuables, such as jewelry or antiques, you can manually track them in Monarch, adding them to your net worth. You can trigger a sync any time or wait for Monarch’s automatic account syncing, which happens a couple of times a day. This includes your investment balances, so you’re aware of your progress in real-time. If you’re looking for a one-stop shop for all finance-related data, Monarch packs a solid punch.

Start Budgeting

8. EveryDollar

  • Cost: $14.99/month or $79.99/year
  • App Store Ratings: 4.7/5 iOS and 3.3/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: 7 days

Like YNAB, EveryDollar uses the zero-based budgeting program. The app promises to help users find up to an extra $395 in their budget, cut expenses by 9%, and have greater financial peace of mind.

You can use the app for free, but its functions are greatly limited to creating a budget and savings plan. With the paid plan, you get features like a financial roadmap, paycheck planning, goal setting, and customized budget reports.

You sync your bank account to EveryDollar so it tracks your spending in real time, can provide recommendations for savings spending, and help you create a robust budget. 

Whether you’re tired of overspending, trying to save for a big goal, or have questions for professionals, EveryDollar provides the support you need to help you get your budget back on track.

We love that you can talk to real financial coaches (with a subscription) to get answers to your most difficult financial questions!

Keep Reading: EveryDollar Review

Start Budgeting

9. PocketGuard

  • Cost: Free with options to upgrade with various plan, including (debt payoff, unlimited budgets, and unlimited savings goals)
  • App Store Ratings: 4.7/5 iOS and 3.8/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: n/a

PocketGuard is a user-friendly budgeting app that keeps tabs on your entire financial life. It automatically constructs customized, responsive budgets based on observed spending and saving activity in linked external accounts. We love its hands-off approach for people who don’t love budgeting but want to stay on track.

PocketGuard categorizes transactions as they occur, providing real-time visibility into your spending activity, helping you identify potential problem spending over time, and identifying opportunities to save.

The app’s In My Pocket feature tells you exactly how much you can safely spend at any given time after accounting for paid and upcoming bills and the monthly or per-paycheck savings built into your budget. You can also use features like a bill payment tracker to avoid missed payments or a debt payoff plan to help you get out of debt faster.

Start Budgeting

10. Goodbudget

  • Cost: Free with the option to upgrade to an unlimited plan for $8 a month ($70 annually)
  • App Store Ratings: 4.6/5 iOS and 4.2/5 Google Play
  • Free Trial Period: n/a

Goodbudget is another envelope-based system built for people who prefer electronic budgeting versus managing paper envelopes.

Notably, Goodbudget’s Free version is appropriate for a decent range of simple to moderately complex budgets, with an allowance for up to 20 envelopes and one account. It’s likely all that a frugal, well-organized couple needs to manage its household finances.

Families with more complicated budgets likely need to upgrade to Plus, a much more comprehensive plan that costs about $70 per year. Plus allows unlimited envelopes and accounts and can work on up to five devices, which makes it ideal for teaching kids about money.

We especially love the debt payoff tracker, which is a customizable debt management plan that makes it easier to see your way clear to paying down longer-term debts. If nothing else, the app is free and can help you get control of your spending by providing a visual of where your money goes.

Start Budgeting

Pros and Cons of Budgeting Apps

Budgeting is important, but like any financial decision, there are pros and cons to budgeting apps you should consider.


  • Automatically sync to your bank account so you don’t have to do manual work
  • Many are available online and as a mobile app to make budgeting on-the-go easy
  • Provides insights into your spending, saving, and overall net worth
  • Helps you make important financial decisions with real-time data
  • Can help you set savings goals or create a debt payoff plan


  • Some budgeting apps have a fee for their premium services
  • Not all apps are available on all platforms
  • You must give up some privacy by linking your bank and financial accounts to the apps

How to Choose a Budgeting App

Choosing a budgeting app is as challenging as choosing the right bank account. To choose the right app, consider the following:

  • What features do you need? Determine what features you want. For example, if you have a lot of debt, you may want an app with a debt payoff plan, or if you are an investor, you may want an app that looks at your total net worth.
  • How much does it cost? There are several free budgeting apps, and just as many that charge a fee. Consider what you get for the fee and if you’ll use the features or if the free apps provide what you need.
  • What customer service options are there? Consider how you contact customer service and what hours. If you’re the type that does financial tasks at night, ensure there is a way to contact customer service during those hours.
  • What type of security do they offer? Only work with budgeting apps that take your privacy seriously and use bank-level encryption. They shouldn’t save your private information or sell it to third parties.

Alternatives to Budgeting Apps

If you aren’t ready to jump on the budgeting apps bandwagon yet, there are alternatives to budgeting apps to consider.

  • Spreadsheet: Google Sheets and Excel are great ways to budget, but they require manual financial data input. If you like entering your own data, and creating custom reports, this could be a free and workable option.
  • Expense tracking apps: If you don’t want a full-fledged budgeting app but need help tracking your expenses, consider an expense-tracking app like Rocket Money. These apps are less robust than budgeting apps but still help you understand where you spend money.
  • Envelope budgeting: If you prefer to handle your finances in cash, you can use the cash envelope system. This requires more work because you must split your income into cash envelopes to monitor your spending and stick to your budget. 

Our Methodology

When choosing the best budgeting apps, we used a large number of factors to compile a list that’s versatile for anyone.

  • Automatic syncing: We prefer apps that automatically link to your bank and other financial accounts for automated reporting. This eliminates the need for manual input and increases the likelihood of sticking to a budget.
  • Categorize expenses: Apps that automatically categorize expenses make it easier to see where you spend and what you should change. We also looked for apps that allowed customization when needed.
  • Customized alerts: Receiving customized alerts when your bills are due or your account balances are low is an important way to stay on top of your budget. We looked for apps that allowed various types of alerts.
  • Ability to plan ahead: Goal setting, forecasting expenses, and aging your money are all important features of the best budgeting apps that we considered.

Final Word

If you’re among the few Americans who have never developed a budgeting system or spending plan, you’re under no obligation to start now. Many people do just fine by following a few basic money management principles and sound spending habits, such as “spend less than you earn” and “pay yourself first.”

But, adherence to tried-and-true money maxims is not mutually exclusive of creating and sticking to a budget or spending plan. They’re complimentary — the latter helping to achieve the former and vice versa.

Perhaps that’s reason enough to adopt one of these budgeting solutions.

Brian Martucci writes about credit cards, banking, insurance, travel, and more. When he's not investigating time- and money-saving strategies for Money Crashers readers, you can find him exploring his favorite trails or sampling a new cuisine. Reach him on Twitter @Brian_Martucci.